Copyright: This work is in the public domain in the USA only.

EXTRACTS FROM ADAM’S DIARY (1904) and EVE’S DIARY (1906) are essentially send-ups of the scripture, in which Twain parodied Genesis, the parables of creation and original sin, and Eve’s role in the fall of humankind. In EXTRACTS FROM ADAM’S DIARY, published with Fred Strothmann’s humorous cartoons of supposedly ancient stone carvings on every left-hand page, Twain playfully established Niagara Falls Park as the setting of the Garden of Eden, “the honeymoon capital of the world.” EVE’S DIARY, accompanied by the stunning line drawings of Lester Ralph, was Twain’s moving eulogy to his wife, Livy, who died the previous year. The grief-stricken Samuel Clemens, in a letter to his brother-in-law, Charles Langdon, wrote: “I am a man without a country. Wherever Livy was that was my country.” Similarly Adam’s tribute to Eve at the end of Eve’s Diary reads, “Wheresoever she was, there was Eden.” Eve’s story is tender throughout and focuses on the more humorous aspects of Adam and Eve’s relationship and eventual “marriage.” Like Adam’s story it lacks the darker implications of the other biblical pieces Twain wrote during the last decade of his life.